This paper presents an investigation into residual stresses in selective laser sintering (SLS) and selective laser melting (SLM), aiming at a better understanding of this phenomenon.
First, the origin of residual stresses is explored and a simple theoretical model is developed to predict residual stress distributions. Next, experimental methods are used to measure the residual stress profiles in a set of test samples produced with different process parameters.
Residual stresses are found to be very large in SLM parts. In general, the residual stress profile consists of two zones of large tensile stresses at the top and bottom of the part, and a large zone of intermediate compressive stress in between. The most important parameters determining the magnitude and shape of the residual stress profiles are the material properties, the sample and substrate height, the laser scanning strategy and the heating conditions.
All experiments were conducted on parts produced from stainless steel powder (316L) and quantitative results cannot be simply extrapolated to other materials. However, most qualitative results can still be generalized.
This paper can serve as an aid in understanding the importance of residual stresses in SLS/SLM and other additive manufacturing processes involving a localized heat input. Some of the conclusions can be used to avoid problems associated with residual stresses.
Mercelis, P. and Kruth, J. (2006), "Residual stresses in selective laser sintering and selective laser melting", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. 12 No. 5, pp. 254-265. https://doi.org/10.1108/13552540610707013Download as .RIS
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